Trump’s Call to Georgia: It’s as bad as you think.

Donald Trump’s party call to Georgia on January 2nd as reported by the Washington Post: a partial transcript.

Some people say this was leaked to WP from someone inside the Trump Administration. To me, when I first heard it, I thought it was recorded on the Georgia side. Makes more sense to me, but I don’t really care which party it was. It’s incriminating to Trump, and security for Raffensperger. Raffensperger played it straight and offered very little.

Trying to transcribe this is a mess because Trump speaks in a complete, jumbled mess. I mostly went verbatim, but cleaned up a little.

I skipped large chunks of it. There’s much more of the same throughout the hour plus recording, I just focused on the more continuous sections.

Trump speaks for probably 90% of the call. The first 15 minutes are an endless cult conspiracy theory rehash by Donny.

I want to say, these kind of phone calls, are probably what Donny has been doing for the past 2 months when he isn’t golfing. He clearly could just bullshit on the phone all day long, every day. In this particular instance, he is very comfortable playing the mob boss, handing out “suggestions” with accompanying veiled threats if those suggestions are not followed. He is honestly quite good at this.

In his own madman style, he does quite well in not finishing sentences or scattered thoughts that imply the type of action he wants, or the type of consequence that will follow if those actions are not met, while simultaneously not directly connecting the two. I will highlight those sentence/thought fragments.

It is worse than his Ukraine call. Much worse. Trump more clearly states he wants fraud to be committed on his behalf in order to win an election. Even if not as a legal matter, that this conversation happened at all, is not acceptable. I do not doubt that a similar conversation was had with other state(s).

Parties: Trump, Mark Meadows, and Trump lawyer Cleta Mitchell: Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, Sec. State Legal Counsel Ryan Germany.

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Trump: By the way, a little information, I think you’re going to find that they are shredding ballots, because they have to get rid of the ballots. ‘Cause the ballots are unsigned, because the ballots are corrupt, and they’re brand new and they don’t have seals and there’s a whole thing with the ballots. But, the ballots are corrupt and you’re going to find that they are…which is totally illegal, it’s more illegal for you then it is for them because you know what they did and you’re not reporting it. That’s a criminal offense. You know, you can’t let that happen. That’s a big risk to you and to Ryan, your lawyer. That’s a big risk. But, they are shredding ballots, in my opinion, based on what I’ve heard and they are removing machinery, and they’re moving it as fast as they can. Both of which are criminal fines and you can’t let it happen and you are letting it happen, I mean, I’m notifying you that you are letting it happen.

So…look, all I want to do is this. I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have. Because we won the state and flipping the state is a great testament to our country, because you know, it’s a testament that they can admit to a mistake, or, whatever you want to call it. If it was a mistake, I don’t know. A lot of people think it wasn’t a mistake it was much more criminal than that. But, it’s a big problem in Georgia and it’s not a problem that’s going away. Not a problem that’s going away…

Ryan Germany: This is Ryan, we are looking at every one of those things that you mentioned…and our investigators…

Trump: Good, but if you find them, you got to say it.

<crosstalk>

Germany: Let me tell you what we are seeing. What we are seeing is *not at all what you’re describing* <with emphasis>. These are investigators from our office, these are investigators from GBI. And they’re looking, and they’re good, and that’s not what they’re seeing, and we’ll keep looking, we’ll keep looking at all these things…

Trump: Well you better check on the ballots, ’cause they are shredding ballots, I’m just telling you Ryan. they’re shredding ballots and you should look at that very carefully, because that’s so illegal. You may not even believe it, cause it’s so bad. But, they’re shredding ballots because they think we’ll eventually get there, because we’ll eventually get into Fulton. In my opinion it’s never too late.

So, um that’s the story. Look, we need only 11,000 votes, we have far more than that as it stands now.

**********

In speaking on Military/overseas ballots-

Trump: A large batch came in, and it was, quote, 100% for Biden and that is criminal, you know, that’s criminal. Okay, that’s another criminal. That’s another of the many criminal events. Many criminal events here.

Um. I don’t know, look Brad, I have to get, I have to find 12,000 votes and I have them, times a lot. And, therefore, I won the state. That’s before we go to the next step, which is in the process of, right now, you know.

I watched you this morning and you said, ah, there was no criminality, but I mean all of this stuff is very dangerous stuff, when you talk about no criminality. I think it’s very dangerous for you to say that. I just don’t know why you don’t want to have the votes counted as they are.

So what are we going to do here, folks? I only need 11,000 votes. Fellas, I need 11,000 votes, give me a break. We have that in spades already.

So tell me, Brad, what are we going to do? We won the election, and it’s not fair to take it away from us like this. And it’s going to be very costly, in many ways, and I think you have to say you’re going to re-examine it and you can re-examine it. But re-examine it with people who want to find answers, not people that don’t want to hear answers.

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There is one particular election employee Trump is stuck on, that is beeped out of the recording. He insists every vote she scanned went for Biden. Raffensperger says: that is not correct. Trump won’t let it go. Trump restates Raffensperger’s position as:

“He (Raffensperger) made that statement with surety [sic], but now I think he’s less sure, because the answer is: they all went to Biden, and that alone wins us the election by a lot.

Raffensperger: Mr. President, you have people that submit information and we have our people that submit information, and then it comes before the court, and then the court makes a determination. We have to stand by our numbers. We believe our numbers are right.

Trump: Why do you say that though? Sure we can play this game with the courts.

***We have to stop there to highlight how messed up this exchange is. What Raffensperger is making clear is that to challenge the state’s finding, puts these two parties on opposite sides of a legal battle. What Trump is making clear, is that he is fully aware that every legal challenge is failing because it has no merit, but he’s bluffing that, sure we could do that if you wanted to. I want to subvert the rightful place of the courts with our own little agreement. Throughout this conversation, I’m letting you know, you better just do what I say, and make a deal that I won the state, or there will be personal legal consequences and/or future election consequences for you.***

Trump: Hey Brad, why wouldn’t you want to check out (beeped out election lady’s name) and why wouldn’t you want to say, hey, if in fact, President Trump is right about that, then he wins the state of Georgia. Just that one incident alone, without going through hundreds of thousands of dropped ballots. You just say, you stick by… I mean I’ve been watching you for…you don’t care about anything. Your numbers are right. But your numbers aren’t right. They’re really wrong and they’re really wrong Brad, and I know this phone call is going nowhere, but ultimately…

Look ultimately I win, okay? because you guys are so wrong and you’ve treated the population of Georgia so badly. Between you and your governor who was down 21 points, and like a schmuck, I endorsed him, and he got elected. But, I will tell you, he’s a disaster, and he will never…I can’t imagine. The people are so angry in Georgia, I can’t imagine he’s ever getting elected right now.

But why wouldn’t you want to find the right answer, Brad? Instead of keeping saying the numbers are right, because those numbers are so wrong.

*****

Mark Meadows jumps in with the idea, both sides just need to meet really soon and agree there’s some actual big issues that need to be examined and the Federal government wants access to Georgia voter data.

Trump then threatens if they don’t settle what Trump wants, the upcoming runoff won’t go to the republicans. Raffensperger says, you can meet with the lawyers and they’ll tell you why your beliefs are wrong. He is not going to have an official meeting with them, as if any of their fever dreams are true. Raffensperger won’t allow them access to Georgia state election data. He is putting the ball in their court to go to court if they want.

Throughout this conversation, Trump highlights how Stacey Abrams is making a fool out of Georgia GOP. Everyone hates the Georgia Governor and Raffensperger.

Trump: Brad, we just want the truth, it’s simple. And ah, and everyone’s going to look very good if the truth comes out. It’s ok, it might take a little while. But, let the truth come out. And the real truth is I won by 400,000 votes, at least. That’s the real truth. But, we don’t need 400,000 votes, we need less than 2000 votes.

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Added 1/4

I’d like to add, now that it seems more evident that this leak to WP came from the Georgia side and not the Trump admin, this makes more sense to what I originally posited.

Also, it is now reported this was the 18th attempt by Donny to get Raffensperger on the phone. 18. So my original assessment that this is how Donny has likely spent the last two months in office, aside from golfing, is closer to being accurate.

Battle Plans

The insertion of Matt Whitaker as acting Attorney General has thus far not furthered Trump’s desire to stifle the Mueller investigation.  Since this administration prefers to operate on its “gut” rather than on background checks, vetting, and common sense, Trump has once again shot himself in the foot.  It is clear that this knucklehead grifter Whitaker realizes his desire for wealth and power at all costs, has placed himself in an untenable position.  Any interest Whitaker may have had himself in sabotaging the Mueller investigation is superseded by a desire for self-preservation.

It is also clear that it was not the insertion of Whitaker that moved the Mueller investigation into enacting their penultimate legal strategy and set-up for the final, albeit slowly unwinding chess moves, for what is as of yet an unclear check-mate.  No.  It was simply the long awaited and doubtlessly useless response from Trump’s lawyers to Mueller’s questions regarding Trump’s involvement in Russian interference in the 2016 election that cemented Trump’s standing and allowed for all of the forthcoming motions, unsealings, indictments and partial daylight on where this whole damn thing is going.

I am still of the belief that I have held all along that the Mueller investigation will not be a direct indictment of Trump either literally or figuratively.  I am still of the belief that the end result will be an actual, real life constitutional crisis that Congress, and truthfully the electorate, will need to find the will to sort through one way or the other.  I believe we will have further proof that Trump and his administration are the self-serving turds we always knew they were and continue to be.

With that in mind, the House of Representatives would do well to concentrate on fact finding the ways in which this administration continues to operate the government in their own interests.  Follow the money.

It is against this backdrop that we need to keep our focus in the present and near future.  Battle plans are drawn up and being enacted.

The government is once again facing the prospect of a partial and possibly full shutdown. 

This is a uniquely unqualified, dumpster-fire of an administration/Congress to be responsible for stewardship of the nation’s finances.  Its a mishmash of competing idiot ideologies, incompetence, and willful ignorance.  There are seven bipartisan bills to fund the government available, all of which are being ignored.  With a partial shutdown on the horizon on Dec. 7, Trump could easily accept the existing $1.7 billion available for his idiot wall, but he is holding out for $5 billion.  It seems it is even possible Democrats would cave for the $5 billion if Congress and Trump would sign off on protecting the Mueller investigation…a non-starter.

It is possible that this will once again result in a continuing resolution to fund the government at existing levels.  In other words, another one of the “kicking the can down the road” approach that is all this fucking government is capable of.

Mike Pence is setting the groundwork for, ‘I didn’t know anything,” and we all know why.

Mark Meadows Secret Plan to Undermine a Democrat Controlled House.


Over in the House, GOP Rep. Mark Meadows has come up with a plan for how Republicans should operate as the minority.  It is being referred to as a secret plan with nefarious intent.  I think the nefarious intent is true but it’s really not a secret, because we all know what the plan is.  But to see it’s bullet points delineated, really makes me wonder why so called “conservatives” desire to govern, when they literally have no fucking desire to actually govern, but only to be in power.

There are no plans to further any policies conservative or otherwise.  Nothing about healthcare or wealth distribution inequity or money in politics or infrastructure, border security, budgeting, education, welfare reform…or any fucking topic that government should be concerned about.  No.

What there is in this plan, is guidelines for how the Republicans could most efficiently obstruct and negatively propagandize Democratic attempts at governance and oversight.

In the opening page, Meadows writes he is “confident that with the right team and member engagement, our conference will be able to tactically play the Democrats’ politicized activities to our advantage.” He adds, “I believe I can position the committee as an effective platform to win back the House.”

The singular concern for House Republicans is how to win back the majority for 2020.  That’s it.